WA applies for $60M in federal preschool dollars

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SEATTLE (AP) -- Washington state is asking the federal government for $60 million over the next four years to expand its kindergarten readiness assessment and its childcare rating system statewide

The Department of Early Learning mailed in its application for the federal Early Learning Challenge on Monday night, a few days before Wednesday's deadline.

Agency Director Betty Hyde is feeling confident about the state's chances in the third round of the Obama administration's Race to the Top competition.

The plan will be presented to the House Early Learning Committee on Wednesday.

Washington failed to win any money in the earlier rounds of Race to the Top, which was focused on K-12 education.

This time, Washington won't have any trouble qualifying for the federal money, but that doesn't mean the competition won't be tough,